PVR said even post reopening, the combination of staggered state wide reopening, capacity restrictions and limited movie releases impacted the admit levels while costs continue to be incurred.( Harsimar Pal Singh/Hindustan Times)
PVR said even post reopening, the combination of staggered state wide reopening, capacity restrictions and limited movie releases impacted the admit levels while costs continue to be incurred.( Harsimar Pal Singh/Hindustan Times)

PVR reports net loss of 49 crore in Q3

Revenue from operations during the period under review stood at 45.10 crore, down 95.04 per cent from 915.74 crore in the corresponding quarter a year ago.
PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 15, 2021 09:03 PM IST

Multiplex operator PVR on Friday reported a consolidated net loss of 49.10 crore for the third quarter ended December 2020, as it continued to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The company had logged a consolidated net profit of 36.34 crore in the same quarter last fiscal, PVR said in a regulatory filing.

Revenue from operations during the period under review stood at 45.10 crore, down 95.04 per cent from 915.74 crore in the corresponding quarter a year ago.

The COVID-19 situation across the country continued to adversely affect the operations of the group, PVR said, adding it has undertaken various cost saving initiatives to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the business which includes reduction in employee costs by temporary salary cuts, headcount reduction and seeking waiver in rental from its landlords.

PVR said settlements have been reached with landlords for 88 per cent of cinemas for complete or partial waiver or discounts for the lockdown period.

It said it negotiated discounts/ rebates in the form of revenue share/ reduction in minimum guarantee post reopening, generally until March 31, 2020.

"Discussions with balance (remaining) landlords in progress and expected to close in the near future. We are yet to reopen 56 screens in 13 cinemas, as of January 15, 2021, since certain rental negotiations are currently ongoing with the mall developers, landlords, lessors and partners," the company added.

The Union Home Ministry issued new guidelines for permitting more activities in areas outside containment zones that include opening up cinemas, theatres and multiplexes with up to 50 per cent of their seating capacity from October 15.

"Since then, various states have issued their respective notifications for cinema reopening over October, November and December 2020 permitting cinemas to commence operations in a staggered manner. As on date, except for the state of Rajasthan and Jharkhand, all other states, where PVR has presence, have allowed cinemas to reopen," the company added.

PVR said even post reopening, the combination of staggered state wide reopening, capacity restrictions and limited movie releases impacted the admit levels while costs continue to be incurred.

To address the situation, PVR said it has further built up on the operational and fiscal steps which include streamlining and re-engineering operations.

PVR said it has also introduced the concept of private screenings, which is a premium and personalised offering wherein a small group of audience hires the entire auditorium to enjoy the content of their choice and no other guests apart from the group members are allowed during that show, thereby reducing the risk of contamination.

Elaborating on the content pipeline, PVR said in view of a staggered reopening across states and restrictions on seating capacity, film producers are being cautious with movie releases. 

"As a result, hindi film producers have withheld release of big budget movies and are likely to announce the release dates over the next few weeks with the evolving situation," PVR said.

Although the big budget Bollywood movies are still hesitant, a few low-mid sized Bollywood movies, stronger Hollywood and diverse regional content have debuted on PVR screens, the company added.

Ajay Bijli, Chairman cum Managing Director, PVR Ltd said: "Consequent to being deprived of the most affordable and engrossing form of entertainment, we believe our audiences' desire to revisit cinemas is strong and there is significant pent-up demand that will help our business recover". 

The South Indian film industry had led the way in terms of release of blockbuster content and the initial performance of Tamil movie “Master” indicates that the customers are ready to revisit their favourite cinemas if the high quality content is available, he added. 

Shares of PVR settled 2.68 per cent higher at 1,473.40 apiece on BSE. PTI SVK ANU ANU

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